Cowboys, March 26, 2011
Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN
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Cowboys

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SS: The Lives of the Cowboys. Brought to you by Billy the Kid Brand Rubberized Saddle Bags ---- so you can do your laundry as you ride along the trail. And now: The Lives of the Cowboys.

(ESPRESSO STEAM)

TR: I don't get why we are sitting around in a coffeeshop in Nashville, Tennessee, when you lost that Songwriter contest you entered and no record label has expressed the least interest in you and we're out of money. Why are we sitting here? Lefty?

(ESPRESSO STEAM)

GK: That espresso machine sounds like a steam locomotive, doesn't it-----
(STRUMS)

Listen to the jingle the rumble and the roar as she glides along the woodland o'er the hills and by the shore
Hear the rush of the mighty engine hear the lonesome hobos call
He's riding through the jungle on the Wabash cannon ball

Got a feeling I'm about to get discovered, Dusty.

TR: They already discovered you, Lefty, and guess what, they discovered they didn't care for your music.

GK: Every day is a new opportunity. This is the coffeeshop that Emmylou Harris hangs out in. Sam Bush. Stewart Duncan. Lots of influential people.

TR: Well, I'm leaving. I'll see you later. Self-absorption does not require a partner. You sit here until you get tired of delusional thinking and I'll meet you back at the motel.

GK: Okay. So long. See you later. (SPURS OFF, DOOR OPENS, SHUTS, ESPRESSO NOISE).

ELH: You want a little warm-up on the coffee, cowboy?

GK: Sure. Thank you---Donna.

ELH: Oh, I'm not Donna.

GK: It says Donna on your uniform.

ELH: Donna died. My uniform's at the cleaners. Found hers in the back, under a mop.

GK: Oh. I'm sorry.

ELH: I take it from that beat-up mistreated guitar that you are a musician. GK: Songwriter.

ELH: Well, so am I and everybody else. How's it going these days?

GK: Just work from real life inspiration. There's an idea for a song in every situation.

ELH: Is that right? What you writing now? Let me see that piece of paper----- (RUSTLE) Hmmmmm. Interesting. (SHE READS)
"She worked in a café
and brought me my latte
and that's how she won my heart.
She looked like Emmylou Harris
So I took her to Paris
And we settled down in Montmartre. " -----Is that about me?

GK: Could be.

ELH: Well, let me go get your coffee. (FOOTSTEPS OFF, THEN BACK) Or would you rather have latte? You said latte in the song.

GK: Sure.

ELH: ONE LATTE!!!! (ESPRESSO SEQ)

(STRUMMING)

GK (SINGS):
I was sitting alone in an old café
When a waitress named Donna walked by
She said, "I'm sorry, I can't take your order
Cause yesterday morning I died."
She said, "It's beautiful up here in heaven.
Once you accept that you're dead.
And she gave me a radiant smile
And then to the waitress I said.

"Will there be any coffee in heaven?
Will it be generously poured?
Will there be cream and espresso machines
When we go to be -----

SW: Excuse me?

GK: Yes, ma'am? Oh. I'm sorry.

SW: Your guitar is hitting me in the shoulder.

GK: I'm terribly sorry.

SW: It's okay, just move over that way, okay?

GK: Sure. I apologize. Just got carried away. Writing a song. Just arrived in Nashville. You hear any of it?

SW: Of your song? Yeah.

GK: And?

SW: I liked the other one better. The one about the rumble and the roar.

GK: Oh. The Wabash Cannonball.

SW: Did you write that?

GK: I did not. That's a Roy Acuff song.

SW: Who's that?

GK: Never mind. Not important.

(CELLPHONE RINGS, SNAP OPEN)

FN: HELLO? ----OH HEY. HI. HOW ARE YOU? -----I'M IN NASHVILLE. ------NO, THAT'S FINE. WHERE YOU?------OH REALLY. …..YEAH, JUST GOT IN YESTERDAY……..NO. NASHVILLE. NOT ASHEVILLE. NASHVILLE……YEAH, JUST SITTING IN A COFFEESHOP, HAVING A CUP OF LATTE.

GK: Excuse me?

FN: HUH?

GK: Excuse me, sir. Do you mind?

FN: What's the problem?

GK: You're talking into that cellphone about a foot from my ear ---- if you don't mind-----

FN: WHAT'D YOU SAY?

GK: I said, would you mind moving.

FN: Not talking to you, talking to him. SORRY, DIDN'T GET WHAT YOU SAID. (FOOTSTEPS) (UNDER SONG) Yeah……right…….I know…….absolutely…….……..right……….uh huh………oh yeah. Yeah, yeah.

GK (SINGS):
He was yelling into his cellphone
About two feet from my ear.
A big old galoot in a wash-and-wear suit
And his hair was all gone or pretnear
What a pitiful person, I thought to myself
As I quietly reached for my gun
And I took hold of Samuel Colt
----------

FN: OKAY, WELL…..GOOD TALKING TO YOU……WE'LL TALK AGAIN SOON……SAY HI TO JUDY. OKAY. BYE. (CLICK)

ELH: Here's the coffee----- (POURING). How about you, Sandy?

SW: I'd take another mocha. No whipped cream.

ELH: Coming right up. How about you, Roxy?

SS (DEEP, PHLEGMY): Cuppa black coffee.

ELH: Okay. Be right there.

(STRUMS)

GK (SINGS):
She sat down by me at the counter.
She ordered a mocha to go.

SW: It wasn't to go, it's for here.

GK:
The waitress addressed her as Sandy.
She was beautiful, don't you know.

SW: Thank you.

GK (SINGS):
She said, would you mind moving over
And give me a little more room?
I said, How about you sit on my lap
And we'll find us a room pretty soon.

SW: I don't remember you saying that.

GK (SINGS):
And she looked at me disapprovingly
But I saw the gleam in her eye……

SW: That isn't a gleam, these are contacts.

GK (SINGS):
And she looked at me disapprovingly
But I saw the smile begin….

SW: I am not smiling. At all. This is called a grimace. Big difference.

SS (DEEP): I'm smiling. Got a gleam in my eye too. Write a love song about me. The name is Roxy. It rhymes with epoxy. Husband's name is Joe and that rhymes with schmoe. Also with No. I'd leave him for you in a heartbeat. You ever touch a woman's heart? Have you? Here. Gimme your hand.

(CELLPHONE RINGS, SNAP OPEN)

FN: HELLO? ----OH HEY. HI. HOW ARE YOU? -----I'M IN NASHVILLE. ------NO, THAT'S OKAY. NO, THIS IS FINE. I CAN TALK. -----WHERE YOU?------OH REALLY. …..YEAH, JUST GOT IN YESTERDAY……YEAH, JUST SITTING IN A COFFEESHOP, HAVING A CUP OF LATTE.

(UNDER) Who? ----- Really. ----- Uh huh. ----- Right. ------ Yeah, that's right……uh huh. (FOOTSTEPS) …….you can say that again……isn't that the truth……

ELH: Mister?

FN: You talking to me, ma'am?

ELH: Who am I looking at right now? FN: Me.

ELH: Then I am talking to you.

FN: What can I do for you?

ELH: Take it outside, okay?

FN: Yes, ma'am.

ELH: Thank you. (FOOTSTEPS AWAY, DOOR OPEN, JINGLE, CLOSE)

GK: I'd take a latte if you have a moment.

ELH: Got all the moments in the world. One latte!!!! (ESPRESSO SEQ)

GK: Love that sound.

ELH: So do I. Grew up in Birmingham, down by the train tracks. Lonesome whistle at night. Train pulling into the freightyard. Engine cutting loose all that steam. Locomotion. That's what music is. It's gotta move you. Like moving the freight.

GK: You don't look old enough to remember steam locomotives.

(PAUSE)

ELH: I'm not old enough. It was a museum. A steam engine museum.

SW: What's a steam locomotive?

ELH: Big engine with a boiler in it and they shovelled coal in and heated water to make steam----

GK: And they made coffee and the coffee drove the pistons and that's how they hauled freight.

(STRUMMING)

GK (SINGS):
Listen to the latte and the cappuccino foam as you fly along the avenue
and coffee takes you home
hear the rush of the sugar, hear the whistle scream
we're riding through the jungle on power of caffeine

ELH (SINGS):
She pulled in to the station one cold December day
as she rolled up to the platform you could hear all the people say
now there's a gal from Birmingham, she's long and she's tall she came up to Nashville
on the Wabash cannon ball

GK: You sound a lot like Emmylou Harris.

ELH: People have told me that.

GK, ELH:
Listen to the latte and the cappuccino foam as you fly along the avenue
and coffee takes you home
hear the rush of the sugar, hear the whistle scream
we're riding through the jungle on power of caffeine

SW (SINGS):
It came from San Diego and up the coast highway
North to Santa Monica and the hills of West L.A.
Some prefer a smoothie or an herbal tea
But a cup of cappuccino is the only one for me.

(CELLPHONE RINGS, SNAP OPEN)

FN: HELLO? ----OH HEY. HI. HOW ARE YOU? -----I'M IN NASHVILLE. -----

TR (DUSTY): Set the phone down, mister.

GK: Dusty, what you doing?

FN: -NO, THAT'S FINE. WHERE YOU?------OH REALLY. …..YEAH, JUST GOT IN YESTERDAY……..I'M IN NASHVILLE.

TR (DUSTY): I said set the phone down, mister.

FN: EXCUSE ME, JACK. ----- What are you doing with the gun?

TR (DUSTY): You're about to see. Set the phone down on the counter.

ELH: Don't shoot my coffee machine.

FN: Okay, okay----- (CLUNK)

TR (DUSTY): I hate those things. (TWO GUNSHOTS, BWANGS)

(STRUM)

SW, ELH, GK (SING, SLOW, HARMONY):
Listen to the jingle the rumble and the roar as she glides along the woodland
o'er the hills and by the shore
Hear the rush of the mighty engine hear the lonesome hobos call
he's riding through the jungle on the Wabash cannon ball.

(ESPRESSO STEAM)

(THEME) SS: The Lives of the Cowboys. Brought to you by Billy the Kid Rubberized Saddle Bags.

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

Old Sweet Songs

Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).

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